Examining User Expectations of the Location of Web Objects

This one is not new, but I never logged it here. Michael L. Bernard's (Software Usability Research Laboratory, Wichita State University) article on the placement of objects on Web pages talks about user expectations for particular objects. This graphic pretty much sums it up.

  • Home link: upper left corner and bottom center
  • Internal links: upper left below home link
  • Advertisements: Top and top right
  • External links: Left below internal links and right
  • Search engine: Top center below advertisements
Of course, one can also conclude that these expectations are based on countless numbers of large sites imitating each other with regard to layout. Matt Jones mulls over the "idiom of web use" at Black Belt Jones.